Those local residents who don’t know much about the draft of what will one day be the Official Community Plan, will have a chance to do their homework over the next few weeks.
Jenifer Wilson, the consultant who has been doing the bulk of the work in presenting the Plan, intends to post copies of the draft around the city from May 25 until June 3.
Locations to view will include the Jim Ciccone Civic Centre, Prince Rupert Library and the Lower level of the Rupert Square Shopping mall. Rupertites will have access to a suggestion box at each location so they can provide their thoughts on the direction that the city plans to go towards when it comes to the final draft of the Community Plan.
For those that don’t make it to one of the locations around town for a look see, a simple click of the mouse will bring up a copy of the plan for your study. As the Community Plan has been posted to the city’s website, you can access it by clicking here.
The Daily News featured the city’s community involvement plans as the front page story in Friday’s paper.
RESIDENTS URGED TO HELP SHAPE THE CITY'S FUTURE
By Leanne Ritchie
The Daily News
Friday, May 25, 2007
Following two open houses this week, the consultants working on the city's Official Community Plan will be taking the document out on tour.
Jennifer Wilson, consultant, said the plan will be posted at a number of high traffic locations throughout the community in the coming week so those who haven't had a chance to look at it so far can review the document and provide their suggestions.
The plan will be displayed on eight separate boards addressing the various themes and the recommended policies for council.
"It's another opportunity for the community to have a look at the plan," said Wilson at Wednesday's night meeting at Lax Kxeen Elementary.
The plan will be on display from 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. Fri., May 25, to Mon., May 28, at the Jim Ciccone Civic Centre in the main concourse and then from Tues., May 29, to Thurs., May 31, from 10 a.m. to 9 p.m. at the Prince Rupert public library and then until Sun., June 3, during regular hours in the Lower Concourse of the Rupert Square Mall.
There will be a suggestion box provided and suggestions received by June 3 will be considered while the consultants prepare the final draft plan for council. Other comments received after then can also be considered by councillors as part of council's bylaw approval process.
The last Official Community Plan was prepared more than 20 years ago and council last year committed more than $70,000 to updating it.
The draft plan was put together using the results of several hundred telephone surveys and 20 focus groups held last year.
Wilson noted that the survey was important because it allowed the consultants to gather a sample of the community's views, not just those who turn out for public meetings.
At the public meetings this week, people had a chance to hear Tom Becker of UMA Engineering review some of the 70 major policies included in the plan and then form discussion groups to talk about issues such as the waterfront, environment, parks, social issues, and transportation.
Facilitators were brought in from various community groups to help record the discussions.
Some of the suggestions included setting a target date to reinstitute curbside recycling, starting a volunteer credit system where people could build up credits for volunteer efforts and then exchange those for passes to the Civic Centre, and finding an area in the city for additional pleasure boating capacity.
The plan itself also outlines areas on Kaien Island that would be suitable for future industrial development, including more than 200 hectares on the back side of Kaien Island and four potential sites where future subdivisions could be developed.
An entire copy of the draft Official Community Plan is also available on the city's web site.